Sometimes it is hard to believe that we are totally dependent on the kindness of our internal and external biota. Everyone fears the dreaded Staphylococcus flesh eating bacteria that is methicillin resistant. Yet how many of us know that our sweat glands are occupied by a benign bacterial cousin? A cousin that aids our immune system in its constant combat with less friendly invaders.
Friendly skin staph bacteria is in fact very helpful to the immune system! The problems arise when they mutate into cousins that cause serious infections in open wounds. Current research indicates that our fascination with anti-bacterial hand cleansers can clearly have some harmful effects when used extensively and often, These cleansers often demolish our protective skin dwellers. (more…)
“This is another fine mess that you’ve gotten us into, Stanley.”
In case you were culturally deprived when you were young, that quote is a rather famous accusation voiced frequently by Ollie in the Laurel and Hardy comedies. About the only thing that I never heard Oliver Hardy blame Stan Laurel for in those movies was his weight. Obesity was not viewed as a national health crisis in the twenties thirties and forties, hunger was closer to home for a lot of our population.
The weighty have always been among us. They have never been as dominant in numbers as they are today. Along with the new fat epidemic comes symptoms of ill health that worry us (a lot) when we exhibit them. Added to that are diseases like cancer, heart disease and diabetes; all common problems related to the obesity. (more…)
Posted in additive-free food, diabetes, excitotoxins, Food Additives, plant based diet, processed food, weigh loss, Whole Food Plant-Based nutrition
Tagged fat epidemic, Food Industry, Obesity, organic whole food, processed food, weight loss
Reading recipe books and diet and advice books are part of my job these days. Thankfully, I get a lot of advance reader copies for review. Most of them I read or at least skim through, sigh and toss aside. Every now and then I actually find one I am wildly enthusiastic about. This is one.
At the end of last year when I received this very thin volume entitled The Diet Dropout’s Guide to Natural Weight Loss. I rolled my eyes and tossed it aside. I mean really! Who isn’t a diet dropout?! And why the cutsie title? (more…)
Posted in book review, Stan Spencer, weigh loss, Whole Food Plant-Based Diet Experts, Whole Food Plant-Based nutrition
Tagged Diet, Health, Nutrition, Obesity, Stan Spencer, The Diet Dropout's Guide to Natural Weight Loss, weight loss
There is a marvelous video that my friend Elizabeth brought to my attention. She posted the link yesterday on Facebook. I took a look and decided it is too good to pass up.
Rip Esselstyn is a former All-American swimmer, pro-triathlete and retired Firefighter. Inspired by his father (Caldwell Esselstyn), he persuaded his Austin Fire Department’s Engine 2 Company to adopt a plant-based diet. The story is written in his best selling book: Engine 2 Diet: The Texas Firefighter’s 28-Day Save-Your-Life Plan that Lowers Cholesterol and Burns Away the Pounds. (more…)
I am not a fan of bitter. I don’t really like quinine, arugula, bitter chocolate or Starbucks coffee. Until recently I would have included green tea on that list. In my mind it is associated with that bitter stuff you get in Chinese restaurants.
Green tea, however, has always been one of those things that I have thought that I “should” like because it is so good for you. Or so I have read. (more…)
Posted in additive-free food, diabetes, plant based diet, sugar-free food, weigh loss
Tagged Epigallocatechin gallate, Flavonoid, Green tea, Linus Pauling Institute, Nutrients, plant-based beverage, Tea
A low-calorie, tasty alternative to mashed potatoes is mashed cauliflower. I actually think they taste better although you may not be able to tell the difference by just looking at them.
Since going to a primarily whole food plant-based diet there are only a few things I really miss. One of them is the butter on and sour cream in mashed potatoes. After watching everyone at Thanksgiving scarf them down I decided I had to pacify myself with a big batch of mashed cauliflower. They tasted great and had the added benefit of making me feel a tiny bit superior for having resisted the potatoes. (more…)
Last Saturday, I was incredibly please to read Dr. Dean Ornish’s opinion piece in the New Your Times entitled Eating for Health, Not Weight
In this piece, Ornish talks about one of the biggest dieting myths today: it doesn’t matter what you eat as along as you lose pounds. Many of us equate thin and healthy; but it ain’t necessarily so! The food you eat matters. (more…)
Posted in Dean Ornish, plant based diet, vegan, vegetarian, weigh loss
Tagged cancer, chronic disease, chronic inflammation, Dean Ornish, diabetes, Health, heart disease, Medicare, Nutrition, plant based diet, Preventive Medicine Research Institute, severe coronary artery disease, the New Your Times, weight loss
Muffins are my latest science project. While some of them have been good, they still were not “perfect”. The main problem was that they were consistently too dry. Adding oil just made them greasy and heavy and adding water, fruit juice or nut milk made them gooey. Most of them would taste ok on first bite, but would soon turn to sawdust in the back of the mouth. It seemed that part of the problem was that the batter was too smooth. Which lead me to experiment with Gluten-Free oats.
All the experiments were getting me confused, so I finally sat down and made a spread sheet (Yes, I know how funny that is)! (more…)
Posted in Breakfast, gluten-free food, sugar-free food, vegan, vegetarian, weigh loss
Tagged Breakfast foods, Gluten-free diet, Muffin, Quick breads, Sugar-Free Muffins, Vegan Muffins
All the muffin experiments reminded me of how much I love cinnamon! There are few aromas that make me happier. Probably for a good reason, since a Western Jesuit University study found that smelling cinnamon boosts cognitive function and decreases feelings of frustration.
Closely related to the smell is the taste. What would apple pie be without cinnamon!? We use it in pancakes, waffles and baked goods. Adding a dash of cinnamon to coffee makes even the worst swill palatable. And a dash of cinnamon is the secret ingredient in tomato soup. (more…)
Thank goodness for friends! One of mine, pointed out that a great number of my recipes start out with sautéing onions, garlic and other veggies. And she wanted to know how I square sautéing with a low-fat diet.
Made me realize that she, along with a lot of other people, think that sautéing is synonymous with frying. Actually, the way I think about it is somewhat different.
First of all, let’s explore the term sauté. The word is French and means jumped or bounced. In traditional French cooking it means browning food to seal in the juices by bouncing it around in a small amount of very hot oil. (more…)